Worried as Prednisolone not helping! - Asthma UK communi...

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Worried as Prednisolone not helping!

Faith007 profile image


I started on Prednisolone this week for the first time due to uncontrolled Asthma symptoms. GP prescribed 30mg for 7 days. Day one I felt that they were helping but now day 3 and my chest has become tight again. I am feeling scared because no one seems to care GP couldn’t be bothered. Has anyone else experienced this? I look forward to hearing from you with any help or advice thank you.

20 Replies

I would be surprised if the day 1 improvement was actually the steroids as they usually take a few days to begin to kick in so I'd give it more time. Many people find that, when they're given say a 5 day course, they only feel like they're kicking in towards the end of this.

So I'd give it more time, but keep an eye inbrye meantime. Tightness can be caused by other things too so if it went pretty instantly and seems to have returned then maybe it's being caused by something else - but equally if it is asthma causing it then it will need more time than 3 days.

Thank you Twinkly29 the GP couldn’t be bothered to explain a thing! I read some other people’s replies and they said that they noticed a difference after a few hours and google said the same. Your reply has put my mind at ease a bit for which I thank you so muchx

twinkly29 profile image
twinkly29 in reply to Faith007

Some people do say that but given how it works to reduce inflammation and the processes of that it would be unusual for it to truly work wonders so quickly. A bit like those who say ventolin works instantly - it can't possibly as it takes 15 mins or so to work so.if it works in like 30 seconds then it's not the ventolin!

Do keep an eye on symptoms and peak flow but use your blue inhaler in the meantime and maybe phone the GP if you're struggling tomorrow as it's Friday and so the weekend coming up.

Angelgoth profile image
Angelgoth in reply to twinkly29

I find pred sometimes works in a day or few hours for me, same with ventolin few mins sometimes. I have confirmed severe asthma and am also on daily maintenance pred. However pred often works very quickly for me so yes it is possible same with ventolin

Interesting, I could of sworn my ventolin worked instantly for me to open my airways. I have mucus that wouldn't budge and was literally chocking and as soon as o took the ventolin it opened my airways abs i was able to cough it up thank god.

Thank you that has really helped. I just panicked thinking that if the Steroids don’t help what will!!

It takes a couple of days at least for my emergency steriods to really kick in...

Sometimes I've got to the 4th day of a 5 day course before they've kicked in.

Just hang in there and see how you get on. 😉

HiI have Eosinophilic Asthma.. Or Allergic Asthma.. Lots of flare ups of inflamation. When I was really bad it took up to day 9 of pred to feel like they'd kicked in. One time they used to work after 24 hours.

You should feel a difference by day 5, so if you're no better by Monday definitely telephone the doctor's again as you may need a longer course of steroids or a stronger daily dose. BUT if things deteriorate over the weekend don't hesitate to phone 111 or if you cannot string a sentence together because of shortness of breath then call an ambulance/attend A&E.

Always best to plan ahead rather than trying to decide what to do when you're too ill as your more likely to delay seeking help. And once you're better, make an appointment to see your asthma nurse in order to review your meds and to make an asthma plan. The plan will lay out action to take during a flare up or an attack and it may allow you to keep an emergency supply of steroid tablets at home. All the best, I do hope you feel better quickly.

Faith007 profile image
Faith007 in reply to Poobah

Thank you Poobah for your advice. On 4th day now had a really bad episode last night and this morning but eased again now. Will definitely get in next week with the Asthma nurse for a review.

I'm one of those people for whom steroids usually start to work within 4 hours, but last time although things were better by day 5 they were by no means completely better, so I discussed with GP tailing them off over two weeks rather than stopping completely at 7 days and this worked for me.

It often takes me a few days and if it's not working my pulmnologist bumps it up to 50 mg. Any better today?

Hi, as a fellow sufferer of Asthma and other severe lung conditions, I can sympathise. I have been struggling for a week. I spent all day I. A&E last Saturday who were so busy they didn’t get a doctor to me for 5 hours and I couldn’t breathe and had bad chest pain.I have spoken to my chest team at a specialist hospital and they want me to go in there for a few days, but I’m reluctant because of COVID. So I am taking steroids for a longer period and having a couple of nebulisers aswell.

Try using your ventolin inhaler four times a day through a spacer, you may need Steroids for longer. Try and give it a few days.

Faith007 profile image
Faith007 in reply to clare86

Thank you for your reply Clare86 I really feel for us all it’s such a horrible condition isn’t it!! I am sorry that you ended up in A&E last Saturday and waited 5 hours to see the doctor that must have been awful for you. I only hope that you’re feeling better now. I am afraid to go to the hospital at present but obviously if I became too bad I wouldn’t have any choice. I was pretty bad again last night and this morning but settled now thankfully.

Covid has really set everything back which is pretty scary for poor people who need urgent treatment for other conditions.

clare86 profile image
clare86 in reply to Faith007

I am still not well with my chest, thank you for your reply.

I’m glad you’re feeling bettrt

Yes...happened to. me and started on a biologic...and asthma almost improved immediately.

Hi iv had asthma since age 1 and had countless amounts of prednisolone over the years. I have felt the benefit after a day or so. Over the years iv had times when the prednisone don't help but peak flow, spo2 is normal etc. I have found in recent years that its actually reflux causing the issue. I had no heartburn or symptoms either. It got to the point when my blue inhaler wasn't working at all and I as so tight chested I found that gaviscon helped my asthma symptoms better than a blue inhaler. Not I'm on a acid reflux med and seems to be better. This might or might not be the case for you but worth exploring. Good luck

Faith007 profile image
Faith007 in reply to DeanSamson

Thank you for your reply I will give this a try in fact I am that desperate I am prepared to give anything a try for that matter lol!

I had similar recently, was on 30mg pred and 2 puffs ventolin every 4 hrs but on the third day I had an attack and got put on 50mg pred for another 5 days, antibiotics and 10puffs of ventolin every 4 hrs and I’m only just getting back to some normality. If u feel worse or not getting better go back to the gp or ring 111 for advice.

Hi Faith007

I was on five day course of steroid tablets, for the first 3 days no change, 4th and 5th, symptoms much better. I can understand your worry, I thought like you “not working “ but me of little faith they were and I began to feel great improvement. Hope this will help. Bernardine

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